So here we are nearly a month later. I haven't had a single lucid dream since the one mentioned below. Until this morning. Frustrated, after more than three weeks of fruitless effort to be awake in my dreams, yesterday I did an archetype meditation on lucid dreaming. The very next night I have an LD. Go figure. But that's a different story.
I woke up early for a standard lucid dream induction method called M.I.L.D. (Mnemonic Induction of Lucid Dreams), invented by the good Dr. LaBerge. With dream mask in tow, I went back to sleep. Eventually I found myself in a dream and realized my disposition not from a dream mask cue, but by recognizing a 'dream sign' (an element of dreams that indicates you are dreaming).
I was in my living room (that wasn't my living room. You know how that goes) with my roommate Tony and his ex-girlfriend. I tell them I'm dreaming and they said, "Hey, that's cool."
With a big smile on my face I say, "You know what that means right? You guys are just a figment of my imagination. You don't really exist."
It didn't seem to bother them much. Tony made some joke about it and we all sat around laughing about them not being real.
It was time to get down to business. Ready to view the new target pinned above my bed back in the world of the awake. I decided I'd close my eyes, clap my hands, and when I opened them I'd be at the target site.
I closed, I clapped, I opened my eyes and… nothing. I was still sitting on the couch with my figment friends giving me a blank look. I think, "Hmmn. Okay. In Joe McM's account of his lucid dream remote viewing experiments, I remember he clicked his heels, opened his eyes and was at the target site. I'll try clicking my heels then." Like it would make any difference if I clapped my hands, clicked my heels or wiggled my damn nose! Hilarious.
I closed, I clicked, I opened my eyes and was still sitting on the couch, now being laughed at by imaginary people and feeling rather silly.
Then it dawned on me. I'm at my house in the dream so the target must be pinned to the wall in my dream as well. I'll just open the envelope and look at the feedback in the dream! Too easy! Feeling like I was cheating and completely blowing protocol by opening the envelope before my session was on paper, I went over to the wall where it was pinned and opened it up. Inside was three tiny little astrology booklets. Like little novelty things. I tell Tony (who makes my paper target pool for me), "Dude. This target sucks." He just laughs. The thought wasn't lost on me that this may actually just be symbology or some representation of the actual target though, so I made a mental note of it.
I'm a little fuzzy on the details, but at about this point I had a false awakening (dreamed that I woke up). I see another dream sign and suspect I'm still dreaming. I found my dream mask on the sofa and pressed the 'reality check button' (a little button on the mask for testing whether you are dreaming or awake. Trust me, this can be an issue. When you press it, it activates the light/sound cue on the mask. Since electronics generally don't work right in dreams, if the cue isn't activated when the button is pressed, chances are you're still dreaming). Proud of myself for recognizing the false awakening, I hold the up the malfunctioning mask to my roommate and say "Ha! See? I'm still dreaming!" like the joke was on him. He didn't seem very impressed.
Back to business. I decide that this time I'll just try and get information about the target the way I normally do in the waking world – sitting quietly with my eyes closed and opening myself to the target. I go outside on the back porch and sit on a swing. Closed eyes, opened to target… nothing. Concentrating really hard on wanting to make target contact I look in front of me and see a row of large trees. The uniformity of their branches strikes me. I wonder if the shape is target related and make a mental note of it. I see two trees close together that are wrapped in vines. Then out of nowhere baskets full of flowers hanging from the sky are all over the place. A hundred of them maybe, all hanging at different lengths off the ground. I start laughing, swinging in the swing and yell out, "It's so beautiful!" And it was.
Then I'm in an office building sitting at a conference table looking over session notes in my lab book. I think maybe the data in my dream book are target related so I make not of them. Indoor columns that arch out at the top like in certain midevil architecture and a line of text: "A quiet place, a place of study."
There are other people sitting at the table. They are there for a job interview. Two executives, a middle aged man and an elderly woman, walk into the room. One of the women there for an interview starts telling the elderly executive how she tried to take some courses from her in college, but the old lady wouldn't let her in the class. A no-nonsense old lady, she starts lecturing the girl on making it happen for herself and not relying on classes.
Then I woke up.
Wrote down what I thought was important from the dream in my lab book, put the pen down and ripped the sealed envelope off it's tack from above my bed. Inside, the feedback was a photo of some sort of protest. You can see the session and feedback photo here.
Now personally, from a learning perspective I can see certain elements of my session in the target photo. Mainly the noted shape of the tree branches as corresponds to the hippie's arms holding up the signs. I feel there was target contact, be it so vague that it's nearly unrecognizable. I'm not one to stretch data and would of course classify this a miss, but in the end, I'm not in a lab or a scientific study. Just a guy practicing and experimenting at home. So ultimately I'm classifying it as a learning experience. Just like every other session.
All this heel clicking has got me thinking. The only time I feel like I really made any target contact in the dream was when I sat down and really concentrated my focus, intensely wanting to make contact. Then I just looked up and there it was. No amount of clapping and doing the hokey pokey seems to be worth a crap if there isn't strong focus behind it. I suppose I could've seen that one coming. Maybe just passive expecting isn't enough to shift the scenery to the desired state even in a dream. Of course this is only after two trials, hardly enough to start drawing conclusions. Probably lots of variables, but next time I'm going to work on focusing my the intensity of my intent… or something like that.
Keep the olives chilled folks. No martinis this morning.